As a Christian, although of the Anglican Communion, I have a lot of reverence for ordained men of God, including Fr. Mbaka. This is the reason I have resisted the strong urge to get involved in his highly provocative habit of intrusion into the realm of politics.
I think Mbaka has reached that stage with his latest blab on Peter Obi in a video that has since infamously gone viral, in which Mbaka, after ridiculously beating his chest for correctly prophesying Obi’s failure in the last election, went on to demand an apology from Peter Obi, if Obi is to ever make it in the future.
Mbaka’s celebration of Peter Obi’s election loss as evidence of his prophetic power is not what is infuriating, since it lacks meaning or value when it comes to an election that most Nigerians including Mbaka’s fellow Men of God believe was rigged by the APC.
What is as intriguing as it is irritating is his demand for an apology from Peter Obi . And I ask, apology for what? Is he demanding an apology from Peter Obi for keeping quiet while Mbaka made a public mincemeat of him in nearly one hour of public ridicule?
Or is Mbaka demanding an apology from Obi for heeding the biblical injunction by insisting that he would not make his donation to Mbaka’s bazar public but prefer to make it in private?
Is Mbaka demanding an apology from Obi because after Obi had humbly left the podium and Buhari’s delegation led Governor of Kano State and Senator Hope Uzodinma took their turn, Mbaka began all over to rubbish Obi by recalling to his new guests how he mercilessly disgraced Peter Obi for his stinginess, obviously to motivate Buhari’s men to make large donations, which they ultimately did with two million naira. Can you imagine.
Here is Mbaka who was ordered by his Bishop, the Bishop of Enugu diocese, to make an open apology to Peter Obi for for his tendentious affront on Peter Obi and which Mbaka did, now turning round to demand an apology from Peter Obi. What is really happening? Meaning that Mbaka’s apology to Peter Obi was a mere pretense and borne out of dishonesty.
I ask Mbaka, what is Peter Obi offence? Did he refuse to make a donation towards your church projects? Only he said he preferred to do so privately. At any rate, if Peter Obi committed any offence by saying that he would make his donation to God in private or by keeping quiet and smiling while Mbaka lambasted him in public, if that is an offence, is it not an offence to God to whom the donation is made to” Then why should Mbaka want Obi to apologize to him? Is it not to God that Peter Obi should apologize to, since his offence is about not donating to God? Is Mbaka now making himself God?
The bible tells us that when we do our charity, our left hand should not know what our right hand is doing, a holy maxim Mbaka should have been expected to adopt, even more than Peter Obi. This brings me to the whole issue of Mbaka’s bazzar melodrama, which was all about building projects and taking his quests round project sites in his church Mbaka. And I begin to wonder whether projects should take priority over the essential mission of men of God which is soul winning. Not only that, the biblical justification of Church bazaar is arguable, recalling how Jesus in Mathew 21:12-13, drove out people that turned the temple of God into a bazaar of sorts. Even if we excuse bazaars today as a means of raising financial support for religious cause, Mbaka should not abuse it.
Mbaka’s strange and unpriestly rejoicing over Peter Obi’s downfall when God tells us not to rejoice over the downfall of our enemies exposes Mbaka’s priority for money rather than the gospel. And had Peter Obi made a public donation at Mbaka’s bazzar, would Mbaka have prophesied Obi’s election failure, much less celebrating his failure? On the contrary, Mbaka would have been singing a different tune today in trying to explain the divine good in Obi’s failure. Tell me, if not for money, how should Mbaka allow the sacrilege of bringing Muslims right into the sanctuary of God, which is taboo even for members of laity and which most of Mbaka’s members have not had a single opportunity to enter?
Recall that on that day, Mbaka had announced that he would finally declare his prophecy on who will win the presidential election on 31st December last year. Let me ask, is it really from God that he receives his prophecies. If it is from God, does God give dates and time when he sends prophecies to Mbaka for Mbaka to tells the exact date his prophecy would be announced. And when the 31st prophetic date came, Mbaka announced Buhari to be the winner of the election. Thereafter he proceeded to Aso Rock to meet Buhari according to several media reports. On his return to Enugu airport from Abuja, Mbaka sprayed every Tom, Dick and Harry that was at the airport with one thousand note each, understandably from the largesse he got from Buhari. How is that?
Recall too that during the Buhari delegation to Mbaka bazzar, he was only concerned about his church projects. He did not tell Buhari’s men anything about the travailis o Igbos under Buhari’s government such as the marginalization of Igbos in the national security apparatus or the exclusion of Igbos from the railway project or the destruction of our farmlands by Fulani herdsmen or whatever. Well, I am not in a position to know if he told Buhari about these things during his visit to Aso Rock.
Prophetic manipulation is the word, which has been Mbaka’s strategy all these years and which has worked for him, at least with some people. Scores of Mbaka’s failed prophecies and curses have proved just that, as can be seen in his endless feud with successive former governors of Enugu State spanning Okwesileze Nwodo, Chimaroke Nnamani and Sullivan Chime.
Recall Mbaka’s battle against former governor Chimaroke Nnamani in 2001 or so. The day Mbaka raised the hullaballoo of Chimaroke sending assassins to his Adoration ground to drop killer substances that killed nearly a dozen of his worshippers, I was at Aso Rock with Barrister Tony Ignis Ngene to see Barrister Handel Okoli, one of the greatest Igbo Presidency appointees that worked and achieved so much for Igbos in many silent ways during Obasanjo’s tenure who was then Senior Special Assistant to for President Obasanjo. As chance had it, Chimaroke had just attended a Council of States meeting in Aso Rock and we happened to meet with him briefly before he headed back to Enugu. He was visibly upset as he received and made frantic wicked blackmail against him, swearing by heaven that he could never have contemplated such an action how much more being privy to it. We all sympathized with him and bade him farewell after which he went back to our business in Aso Rock.
Back home two days after, Enugu was reverberating with the news of Mbaka’s wild allegations against Chimaroke with a thousand and one versions of the story flying around, which most of his followers bought into.
One of the fallouts of the blame game was the holding of a candle-light procession by Mbaka and hundreds of his followers as they carried a purported coffin of Chimaroke as they marched along major streets of Enugu, signifying the imminent death of Chimaroke. When Chimaroke refused to die some six months after Mbaka’s curse, Mbaka now changed gear and turned every Wednesday session of his Adoration ministry into a house of curses and prophecies about how Chimaroke will never win election for a second term.
Mbaka went on to prop up an Abuja-based political neophyte from somewhere in Oji river, one Architect Obiechina, whom he said would be the governor of Enugu State in place of Nnamni’s second term. It turned out that Mbaka’s candidate did not even know when the elections were held, just as Mbaka told Atiku and Peter Obi during the bazzar debacle. The young man was so overwhelmed by support for Nnmani that nobody knew when he silently ran to his Achi village and from there quietly returned to his Abuja base. Nnamani won the election with a greater landslide.
Sullivan Chime suffered similar experience in the hands of Mbaka over the issue of disengaged workers of Enugu State, even when it was Sullivan who recalled them to work. Like Nnamni. Mbaka and his church members also staged a prophetic and curse procession against the Sullivan’s second term. This time, Mbaka brought up another candidate whom he prophesied to be the next governor, one Engr Val Nnadozie, one of his fanatical members who slept in Mbaka’s church daily throughout the campaign period for full-dose anointing under Mbaka’s special watch. Again, Mbaka’s prophesy proved false. Sullivan again won with a greater landslide. Tell me then why Mbaka should celebrating Obi’s election loss as vindication of his prophetic power.
Beyond Enugu State, Mbaka would still not rest in his morbid penchant for cursing and vilifying politicians from the South as he took on former President Goodluck Jonathan during the tail end of his first tenure. This was after Mbaka, perhaps after he unsuccessfully tried to lure the former President to his Adoration Ministry, apparently to donate money to his Church, Jonathan’s wife, Patience, eventually came to Mbaka’s church, reportedly at the instance of Senator Ike Ekweremadu, to represent Jonathan at Mbaka’s church. That visit turned to be another show of shame as Mbaka stooped so low as to demand Patience’s phone number. Patience initially feigned oblivious of Mbaka’s request but after Mbaka kept on pressuring her, the woman giving him the phone number of one of her special assistants, politely but intelligently telling Mbaka that all phone calls to her are channeled through her assistants as she is most of the time very busy with official matters. The grapevine had it that after Patience had gone, Mbaka called her Special Assistant’s number after two weeks and was told that Madam was too busy. He called again the following several days and was met with the same response. Then pronto, Mbaka began his predictable war of prophecies against Goodluck Jonathan, declaring that Jonathan would never see the four walls of Aso Rock for a second term and at the same time eulogizing and deifying President Buhari as God’s anointed President come 2015. To support his prophecy, he made up the story of two pigeons one of which refused to fly and which represented Jonathan while the one that flew represented Buhari’s victory. Well, this time, luck shined on Mbaka and Jonathan lost to Buhari, although in questionable circumstances.
Luck also shined on Mbaka during his bout of invectives against Okwesilieze Nwodo during the latter’s stint as PDP national chairman, a rare case of Igbo chairman ship of the party. In the end, Nwodo was removed as PDP National chairman as a result of scuffle with some state and national PDP members. It is instructive that since Nwodo’s removal, no other Igbo man had had the chance to be chairman of a major political party in Nigeria.
From Okwesileze to Chimaroke to Sullivan to Jonathon and now Obi, each had the privilege of a whole denigrating music album in their name, courtesy of Mbaka. I ask myself why is it that Mbaka sees only his fellow Igbo politicians as the only ones deserving of his curse and negative prophecies? Is it only in Igbo land among other tribes that bad politicians exist. Or does Mbaka have a short sight prophetic vision that can’t see beyond Igboland? Why should he even curse people when only God can curse? From where does he even derive the authority to curse people. Certainly not from the bible or Christ who is the supreme authority of the new testament church. Nor is Mbaka’s use of Elijah of old as reference for cursing people tenable in the new testament era when Christ explicitly teaches a new law of love and not tit for tat.
Instead of cursing his own people and processing fire and thunderstorm against them, Mbaka as a man God should rather act as a peace maker and arbiter among his warring people, politicians and non politicians alike. That was what ancient leaders and men of God in the bible did among their people, by being saviours and arbiters rather than killers and enemies of their people. Recall Moses, Gideon, Jephtah, Sampson, Joseph, Deborah, Esther, name them.
We have other men of God in this country far more powerful and commanding far more number of followers and braches worldwide. Think of men of God like T. B. Joshua, Pastor Adebayo of Redeemed Christian church, Bishop Oyedepo of Winners Chapel, Pastor Kumuyi of Deeper Life church, even our own Muoka of God’s Chosen, many of them having world renowned universities and higher institutions. But not one of them has been heard flaunting disparaging and death prophecies with reckless abandon. But here is Mbaka with a single localized ministry brandishing curses and prophecies in place of blessings and messages of love and peace among men. I believe that is not the right way for a man of God.
Here in Nigeria, I remember a time the late sage Awolowo with Abiola and other Yorubas, it was Primate Olufosoye that brokered peace and amity among them. Also when Ojukwu was having issues with some Igbo leaders, it was Bishop Chukwuma who initiated a successful peace move. This is the path I expect Mbaka to tow, to unite and not to scatter, build and not destroy, correct, not curse his own people.
Mazi Omife I Omife